The truth is that, often, we want to be anything but a shepherd. And, by the way, that’s often what our people want to. In 1875, the following want add appeared in the Milwaukee Sentinel
Wanted- A rector for St. James' Church. He must possess all Christian graces and a few worldly ones; must have such tact and disposition as will enable him to side with all parties in the parish an all points, giving offense to none; should possess a will of his own, but agree with all the vestry; must be socially inclined and of dignified manners--affable to all, neither running after the wealthy nor turning his back upon the poor; a man of high-low church tendencies preferred. Must be willing to preach first-class sermons and do first-class work on second-class compensation--salary should not be so much of an object as the desire to be a zealous laborer in the vineyard; should be able to convince all that they are miserable sinners without giving offense. Each sermon must be short, but complete in itself--full of old-fashioned theology in modern dress: deep but polished, and free from the eloquence peculiar to newly-graduated theologians; should be young enough to be enthusiastic, but possess judgment of one of ripe years and experience. Only he who possesses the above qualifications need apply.
I’m so glad that God is the one we have to please, not man. And God says, “I have one thing I want you to do: Shepherd the flock of God. But what does that mean exactly? What does it really mean when I am told to “Shepherd” the flock